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In the Kitchen with Diane

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We all need to cook to survive but many of us can find spending time in the kitchen a bit of a chore. I admit that’s how I have felt, very often, particularly in recent years. But … guess who’s been inspired to be in the kitchen lately? Yes, and being a tad on the creative side (you’ll remember my recent foray into making marmalade).

There are likely multiple factors (less stress recently, for one) that contribute to the ripening of my creative juices in the kitchen these days.

A couple weeks ago I finished reading an incredibly interesting novel in which food and cooking was one of the main characters. It was so well written, which I really appreciate, yet it was a story about friendships and connections with people. What’s the novel you’re wondering: The School of Essential Ingredients. It’s a delicious novel by Erica Beauermeister and I definitely recommend it for all the readers out there, whether you enjoy cooking or not.

So, reading that tasty novel certainly was responsible for adding some spice to my creativity in the kitchen. Being out and about with friends has added to my feelings of well being and creativity — that’s what I call REAL social networking! Seems the more unplugged I have become, the more my creativity rises.

Two weeks ago I bought another book, The Complete Book of Small-Batch Preserving: Over 300 Recipes to Use Year-Round. So today, after taking the dogs for a bike ride, I decided to take advantage of a dull day and do some more canning.

I made the corn relish. Not only was it easy but it really took very little time — far less time than making the marmalade. This particular recipe has a bit of a southwest flavour rather than the corn relish our grandmothers made so it has a bit of a unique twist. I already have my eye on another recipe in the book that I’m going to make next. Now I have to go out and buy more canning lids.

So what is inspiring you these days?


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Marcie - March 25, 2012 - 1:48 pm

Such lovely glimpses inside your kitchen and your creative cooking skills. And – yes – I have to agree about the less time spent on line..the more creative we are!

Kelly @ DTTDidc - March 25, 2012 - 5:20 pm

I love baking & cooking and trying out new recipes. My latest fave is chicken tortilla soup. It has lots of lime juice in it, and it’s soooooo good! I also got great recipes for broccoli slaw and sex in a pan – YUM and YUM!

If you keep doing more and more canning, you’ll have to open a shop and sell all your goodies!

Cicerosings - March 28, 2012 - 5:46 pm

That “Small Batch Preserving” is a great book. Have it myself.